Popular search terms:
Published:   |   Last Updated: March 12, 2024

Tax Assistance for Disaster Situations

Use this page to get tax guidance for taxpayers affected by disaster situations.

If you are in one of the following states Disaster Relief may apply to you:

The current list of all eligible localities as well as prior years is always available on the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.

Disaster Relief Guidance

icon

Latest Tax Relief Guidance in Disaster Situations

Recent special tax law provisions may help you recover financially from the impact of a major disaster in your location.

Learn More
icon

Preparing for Disasters

Are your home and/or business ready if a disaster strikes? Get information and suggestions on paperless record keeping, documenting assets and valuables.

Learn More
icon

Around the Nation

Get IRS news specific to local areas, primarily disaster relief or tax provisions that affect taxpayers whose homes and/or businesses are located in those geographic areas. 

Learn More

Tax Guidance for Taxpayers Affected by Disaster Situations

Individuals and Businesses

Those affected by disasters can find guidance by accessing the frequently asked questions page.  

Reconstructing records after a disaster may be essential for tax purposes, applying for federal assistance or claiming insurance reimbursement. The more accurately the loss is estimated, the more loan and grant money may be available.

Tax Professionals

Charitable Organizations

After a disaster or in other emergency hardship situations, you may be interested in providing assistance to victims through charitable organizations. The IRS Disaster Relief Resources for Charities and Contributors provides a number of resources to help accomplish this goal.

Publication 3833, Disaster Relief, Providing Assistance Through Charitable Organizations, describes how members of the public can use charitable organizations to provide assistance to victims of disasters or other emergency hardship situations. Before making a donation, taxpayers should make sure they are dealing with a legitimate organization.  IRS.gov has a search feature, Tax Exempt Organization Search, that allows people to find legitimate, qualified charities to which donations may be tax-deductible. 

Disasters can come in many forms and happen when you least expect it.

How do you know if you are a taxpayer affected by a disaster?

Affected Taxpayers are those whose principal residence or principal place of business was located in a disaster area. 

If you didn’t reside or have a business in the disaster area, you can still get relief if the tax records necessary to meet a filing or payment deadline were located in the covered disaster area.  Similarly, if you are outside of the disaster area but your tax return preparer is in the disaster area and is unable to file or pay on your behalf, you may qualify for relief. 

All individuals and disaster relief workers who were visiting the area during the disaster and were injured or killed due to the disaster, are also entitled to relief. 

How is relief provided to taxpayers affected by a disaster?

The IRS identifies taxpayers located in disaster areas by their zip code and will systemically apply filing and payment relief. 

Affected taxpayers who are located outside the disaster area, can call the IRS toll free at, 1-866-562-5227, to self-identify for disaster relief. 

Where can I find IRS disaster announcements?

The IRS will announce the type of disaster, designated disaster locations, the dates of the disaster, and the types of tax relief. Tax relief granted by the IRS is found in the IRS disaster announcements located on the Tax Relief in Disaster Situations page and on the IRS News From Around the Nation page by selecting your state. 

Detailed information about the deadlines that can be postponed by the IRS can also be found in Revenue Procedure 2018-58 and Treasury Regulation section 301.7508A-1(c). 

Can I claim a casualty loss due to a disaster?

Taxpayers can claim disaster-related casualty losses on their federal tax return for the year of the disaster or the prior year. 

Taxpayers may deduct personal property losses that are not covered by insurance or other reimbursements.  

When you claim a disaster loss on your tax return, place the type of disaster in bold letters at the top of the Form 4684, along with the FEMA disaster declaration number.  

 For more information and details see: 

Government Agency Disaster Information

DisasterAssistance.gov

This is a one stop Web portal that consolidates information from 17 U.S. Government Agencies where you can apply for Small Business Administration loans through online applications, receive referral information on forms of assistance that do not have online applications, or check the progress and status of applications online.

Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)

Federal disaster aid programs provided by FEMA are available to citizens affected by major disasters.

Benefits.gov

This site provides survivors and disaster relief workers with the many disaster relief programs available. Perhaps you have suffered damage to a home or business, lost your job, or experienced crop damage due to a natural disaster. Benefits.gov has a variety of national benefit and assistance program geared toward disaster recovery.

READY.gov

Learn how individuals and businesses can prepare for and respond to all kinds of disasters and emergencies.

Small Business Administration (SBA)

The SBA is responsible for providing affordable, timely and accessible financial assistance to homeowners, renters and businesses of all sizes located in a declared disaster area. Financial assistance is available in the form of low-interest, long-term loans for losses that are not fully covered by insurance or other recoveries.

USA.gov 

Get more information about receiving government resources if you were affected by a federally declared disaster.